Spices in bulk
This article was originally published in February 2011
By the pinch or by the pound
Spices long have prompted global exploration, from adventurers in galleons on the hunt for new troves or, in modern times, our search for just the right seasoning for tonight’s soup, roast, vegetables or baked treat.
The dozens of jars filled with culinary herbs and spices in PCC’s bulk section offer an easy, affordable way to explore those alluring global flavors. Buying from bulk is ideal for perishable items like spices: Head home with just the needed amount so your supply remains fresh, fragrant and potent — with minimal packaging to boot. Think of bulk as a treasure hunt: A chance to discover new ingredients for spice rubs, marinades, your favorite chili, cookies and other concoctions without having to commit to an entire container of any one seasoning.
Store spices in airtight containers in a cool, dark place. Ground spices stay fresh about six months, while whole spices (cinnamon sticks, nutmeg, etc.) will keep for about one year.
Many spices offer health benefits and have been incorporated into traditional medicine practices around the globe. Just a pinch of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove or ginger, for example, can help reduce inflammation, moderate cholesterol, improve digestion and even calm nausea. Learn more in the Sound Consumer.
Cooking with flavorful spices such as turmeric, coriander, cumin and chili powder is a delicious way to reduce salt intake.
Packed with nutrients
Herbs and spices deliver more than great flavor. Many help boost your body’s immune system, aid digestion and add vital vitamins and minerals to your diet. Here are some standouts:
- Cumin is packed with iron and has a long-standing reputation as a digestive aid. This aromatic spice with its distinctive flavor and warm aroma is used around the world, both as a ground spice and a whole seed. Try these simple recipes and ideas.
- Cayenne pepper is high in eye-healthy vitamin A. Try a healthy pinch to boost chili, spice rubs and other flavorful dishes from warm to belly-warming hot.
- Mustard seed contributes selenium, used by the body to prevent cellular damage, and is great in marinades and condiments.
- Turmeric is high in the trace mineral manganese, which helps us process fatty acids and cholesterol. Add it to curries, chicken tagines and other spicy dishes for gorgeous color and flavor.
- Cinnamon is an excellent source of manganese and a very good source of fiber, iron and calcium. Enjoy on your morning oatmeal or in your favorite recipe for apple crisp, or add it to meaty recipes, like this Cuban Tortilla Torta.